Netherlands Lifts Defense Export Restrictions Imposed on Turkey, Saudi Arabia and U.A.E.

  • Defensemirror.com Bureau
  • 10:28 AM, July 19, 2023
  • 1226
Netherlands Lifts Defense Export Restrictions Imposed on Turkey, Saudi Arabia and U.A.E.
F-16 fighter @Dutch MoD

The Netherlands on Tuesday lifted the ban on arms sales to Turkey, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

The Dutch Foreign Ministry, Defense Ministry and the Economy and Climate Affairs Ministry released a joint statement on the lifting of restrictions. The statement included a list of precautions taken by the government related to restrictions on weapons exports.

The Netherlands joined the bandwagon of countries imposing arms embargo on Saudi Arabia and U.A.E. for their involvement in the Yemen War in 2018. A year later, it suspended weapons exports to Turkey over Ankara's cross-border counterterrorism operations into Syria.

Noting that the Dutch government wants to strengthen defense cooperation in Europe, the statement pointed out that there is a need for fair competition in the EU. The statement added that more than half of defense sector’s revenue is generated from exports.

The Netherlands is the source of about 8% of Europe's total arms exports to Turkey, according to figures from Amsterdam-based research and campaign organization Stop Wapenhandel. Military equipment transferred to Ankara included mainly parts for tanks and armored vehicles, as well as technology and parts for fighter planes and attack helicopters.

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